Friday, February 22, 2013

Vikings Corner Mock Draft 1.0

Which players will our favorite teams target? Daniel House

has it broken down in his full 32-team NFL Mock Draft.

The day you have all been waiting for is here and Vikings Corner analyst Daniel House is set to unveil his 1st NFL Mock Draft for the 2013 season. Here it is:

1. Kansas City Chiefs: Luke Joeckel- OT: Texas A&M- Look for the Chiefs to address the quarterback position internally or via trade. Andy Reid may look in the direction of Nick Foles, who he coached last season with the Philadelphia. Don't lose faith in Matt Cassel because he wasn't given a legitimate chance last season. The offensive line was so bad last season that Cassel was injured early. Fans lost faith in Cassel and even applauded when he was injured. Reid is great at developing players and could turn the tides for Cassel. Joeckel gives the Chiefs an offensive tackle for the future. He has long arms, is very agile and easily could be a fixture on the Chiefs offensive line for many seasons.

2. Jacksonville Jaguars-Star Lotulelei- DT: Utah- Lotulelei was profiled in our last post and is one of the top prospects in the draft. Tyson Alualu has been a major disappointment for the Jaguars and was a reach when they selected him in the draft. They will want to make sure Lotulelei has the potential before they waste a pick on another defensive tackle. Terrance Knighton is a free agent and will be pursued in the open market. Lotulelei would be an improvement in run defense and could possibly be an improved pass rusher with improved technique.

3. Oakland Raiders- Geno Smith- QB: West Virginia- Oakland has always had the tendency to reach for quarterbacks that they believe are the "future." For example, they are still paying former LSU quarterback Jamarcus Russell. Smith hasn't impressed me in ways that others have discussed. He has a decent arm and has been compared to fit into the rushing style that the quarterback position evolved into last season in the NFL. I feel like he lacks the intelligence to play in the NFL and has struggled when it comes to progressions. If he has to go into the second or third reads, he has struggled at times. He could be an injection to the Raiders and might be a risk worth taking. We will have a more firm grasp in the coming weeks.

4. Philadelphia Eagles- Eric Fisher- OT: Central Michigan- No question the Eagles will need to improve an offensive line that was riddled with injuries last season. The scheme that new head coach Chip Kelly will implement requires complicated protection schemes and will leave the quarterback with vulnerability if the offensive line is not solid. Fisher has proven that he is a great run blocker, but has struggled at times in pass blocking schemes. We will see him isolated in drills at the Combine and see the picture clearer as the Draft approaches.

5. Detroit Lions-  DeMarcus Milliner- CB: Alabama- After watching the Lions play the Vikings twice and in several games this season, there is no question they need help in the pass defense area. Milliner is over 6 feet and is a smooth player that is always around the ball. He has had some issues closing on the ball, but overall is as athletic as they come. Look for his 40 yard dash time to be one of the highest at the Scouting Combine.

6. Cleveland Browns- Bjoern Werner- DE: Florida State- The Browns must improve a terrible pass rush, which was one of the worst in the league last season. Werner emerged as a great pass rusher and was able to get to the quarterback on a frequent basis. He must improve containment, but that comes with experience. Look for Werner to be a player that rises and is covered frequently leading  up to the draft.

7. Arizona Cardinals- Chance Warmack- OG: Alabama- It is very unorthodox for a guard to be selected in the top ten of the draft. GM's look for best talent and don't draft for need. Many believe that quarterback is the Cardinals best option, but not in this year's draft. Kevin Kolb started the season 4-2 and the Cardinals ended up winning 1 game the rest of the season after his injury. Warmack is one of the top prospects in this draft and could rise as the draft approaches. He has the perfect build and has proven that he can dominate in run blocking. His size and pure athletic ability, make him one of the best guard prospects to enter the draft in a few seasons.

8. Buffalo Bills- Cordarrelle Patterson- WR: Tennnessee- The best option at quarterback is off the board, so the Bills will select the best available skill player to pair with a quarterback selected in the later rounds. Patterson, a six foot three big bodied receiver, is a game changer and has the skills to be vertical threat and many have compared his skills to Andre Johnson of the Houston Texans. If he isn't selected here, he will fall towards the middle of the first round. Buddy Nix drafts talent and will not pass up an athletic specimen, for a quarterback he can address later in the draft.

9. New York Jets- Jarvis Jones- OLB: Georgia- Jones' stock will fall after not participating in the scouting combine for no apparent reason. Jones is a physical beast and is a pass rusher. After racking up 28 sacks in two seasons, he will be a perfect piece of the puzzle for Rex Ryan's defense. He is a piece that Ryan could build around and he would fit well in their 3-4/4-3 style defense. Jones is a mirror image to linebacker Von Miller and could rise to be a top 5 pick. It will be based upon his explanation for not attending the scouting combine.

10. Tennessee Titans- Kenny Vaccaro- S: Texas- This player is the ultimate safety in this draft. He is by far the best safety in the draft and is amazing in coverage. He has matched up well with tight ends and running backs in his career and can still be a threat in run support. Safety is a very difficult position to draft or to find at a premier level. The Titans will not miss out on an opportunity to draft one of the best athletes in the 2013 NFL Draft.

11. San Diego Chargers- Barkevious Mingo- DE: LSU- Mingo has so much talent and will evolve into an elite pass rusher if he can polish up his skills. Shaun Phillips is a free agent and will likely not be retained, so Mingo fits the void, while still fitting the "best-player available" category. With an improvement in containment and in coverage scheme Mingo can be a perennial defensive end in the NFL.

12. Miami Dolphins- Sharrif Floyd- DT: Florida- Floyd is on the rise and will watched closely as the NFL Scouting Combine progresses. As profiled in our last post, we discussed Floyd's athletic ability and how he is so athletic for his size. The Dolphins will be attempting to resign defensive tackle Randy Starks and may not be able to do so. If that is the case Floyd could be the athletic option the Dolphins are looking for.

13. Tampa Bay Buccaneers- Jonathan Banks- CB: Mississippi State- Banks has great size at 6'1" and can play bump coverage with the best of the players in this class. With Aquib Talib gone and Ronde Barber at safety, Banks just makes sense for the Buccaneers at this venture of the draft.

14. Carolina Panthers- Jonathan Hankins- DT: Ohio State- Hankins is very comparable to Pat Williams and is definitely a premier run defender. He is very athletic and gets off the ball surprising well for a 303 pound man. The Panthers had one of the worst pass rushes and struggled to put pressure up the middle. With one of the worst middle defensive line attacks in the league, defensive tackle is a must for the Panthers.

15. New Orleans Saints- Ziggy Ansah- OLB/DE: BYU- There is a phenomenon for Ansah heading into the 2013 Draft. I would put him in the proverbial "Boom or Bust" category. Ansah will either be a great player or will fall off the map as quickly as he entered the draft. The Saints are looking to improve upon one of their worst defensive seasons in team history. They will be switching to the 3-4 and Ansah fits the scheme well. Ansah will be someone to watch during workouts in the coming months.

16. St. Louis Rams- Lane Johnson- OT: Oklahoma- Let's face it the Rams had a rough season due to low protection on quarterback Sam Bradford. The Rams have two first round picks, so they can add to high level players to an already exciting proposition of players. Johnson is certainly a great prospect and can move his feet for a large man. Johnson can either play left or right tackle, depending on the Rams decision on offensive tackle Roger Saffold.

17. Pittsburgh Steelers- Damontre Moore-DE/OLB: Texas A&M- Moore is definitely the definition of a great pass rusher and I could see him being selected higher if he impresses NFL personnel. He proved he can get to the quarterback, but will need to prove he is ready for the next step. Many scouts have questioned whether he will be an immediate impact or whether he will be a bust. Moore can improve an aging Steelers defensive front that needs a bolster before 2013.

18. Dallas Cowboys- Kawann Short- DT: Purdue- Short is a big bodied defensive tackle who is great in run defense, but has had problems getting off the ball. With work he can become a perfect defensive tackle for the Cowboys. With Monte Kiffin enter Dallas with the Tampa 2, they will need to find a defensive tackle to improve depth. Short is the perfect pick at this juncture and will be someone to watch at pro-day workouts.

19. New York Giants- Alex Okafor- DE: Texas- Okafor is exactly the type of defender the Giants are looking for. A player that is great in coverage and is athletic enough to rush the passer. With Chris Canty leaving and Osi Umenyiora hitting the free agent market, it makes perfect sense for Okafor to be selected in this spot.

20. Chicago Bears- D.J. Fluker- OT: Alabama- Many believe the Bears and the entire NFC North will draft defense, but I don't see how the Bears can manage to do this. Jay Cutler was battered during the entire duration of the season. It was a key reason the Bears magically fell apart the end of the season. The game that comes to mind was when the Bears traveled to San Francisco and Aldon Smith absolutely man-handled the Bears offensive line. With Marc Trestman hired as head coach, he will look to address the protection in front of Cutler and then will look defense in the later portions of the draft. Fluker is gaining steam and definitely has a chance to rise before the draft. Fluker is big, but agile and can help the Bears fill a hole.

21. Cincinnati Bengals- Alec Ogletree- LB: Georgia- The Bengals have always never been afraid to take a chance on a disgruntled player. Ogletree's talent outweighs his off-field issues. With structure, many GM's feel they can change his trend of poor behavior. Ogletree could single handily change the outlook of the Bengals and with Ray Malaluga becoming a free agent, it makes sense.

22. St. Louis Rams- Matt Elam- S: Florida- Elam is known for being one of the hardest hitters in this year's draft class. He has speed and covers ground quickly, but has had problems over-pursuing. The Rams have two first rounds picks and will select offensive line first and then will address a key backend secondary issue by selecting Elam.

23. Minnesota Vikings- Manti Te'o- LB: Notre Dame- Ok everyone, let the Lennay Kekua jokes begin, but Te'o is a player that can not be passed up. The Vikings have a need at linebacker and must address it with Te'o being the best player available. Let's not forget that Te'o was a top ten projection before the girlfriend hoax. He will be asked tough questions by GM Rick Spielman, but his talent is one of the best at this position. Many believe we need to address the wide receiver position, but I feel we will resign Harvin, draft another receiver in the later rounds and will be fine at this position. In addition, don't be surpised if the Vikings make a free agent pursuit of Greg Jennings or Mike Wallace, which would mean DE Jared Allen would need to restructure.

24. Indianapolis Colts- Sheldon Richardson- DT: Missouri- Richardson is a big bodied defensive tackle, but brings the pass rush at times. The Colts had one of the worst statistical seasons against the run and need to address this issue before next season. Richardson is one of the players that could rise if he dazzles at the combine, but he has to prove that he is ready to play at the next level. He has had some discipline problems, such as penalties, but is a developmental player for Chuck Pagano.

25. Seattle Seahawks- Bennie Logan- DT: LSU- Logan is a player that has some question marks. Many question his durability and if he is more than a "2-down" defensive tackle in this league. Pete Carroll will push him to the maximum amount and Logan will succeed in Seattle. The middle of the Seattle defense struggled against strong middle portions of the offensive line and Logan would solve this issue.

26. Green Bay Packers- John Jenkins- DT: Georgia- Let's face it, it is very difficult to predict what Ted Thompson is going to do come draft day. Jenkins is a mammoth of a defensive tackle, but gets off the ball well. You won't see a ton of sack production, but he is a "run stuffer." One issue is conditioning and whether he can stay on the field for an extended period of time. Let's just say nobody will be moving Jenkins off the line of scrimmage.

27. Houston Texans- Terrance Williams- WR: Baylor- Andre Johnson is in his 11th season and could be hitting the production decline. This would be similar to the same strategy that Atlanta took when they drafted Julio Jones to compliment Roddy White. Williams is a big bodied target and will be a reception style receiver. He has size and could be a goal line threat for Matt Schaub and the Texans.

28. Denver Broncos- Sam Montgomery- OLB/DE: LSU- Montgomery will dictate where he is selected in the draft. Montgomery would be great value at this pick and could be flexed around the defensive line. He has the physicality to play in many different positions and is a great depth pick for the Broncos.

29. New England Patriots- Sylvester Williams- DT: North Carolina- This would be an ideal pick for Bill Belichick at number 29. Williams is so atheltic that he could rise very high into the middle of the first round. He has the ability to run a 4.9-5.0 in the 40 yard dash at the Combine. The Patriots need a defensive tackle to compliment Vince Wilfork in the interior of the defensive line.

30. Atlanta Falcons- Chase Thomas- DE/OLB: Stanford- Thomas is a great pass rusher, but has struggled at times in run support and containment. He was impressive in the Rose Bowl and stood out as a threat on the defensive side of the ball. I think it is unlikely that the Falcons stay in this pick and they will look to trade up for a pass rusher. The Falcons were last in the league in sacks last season and they must find a pass rusher immediatley.

31. San Francisco 49ers- Jonathan Cyprien- S: Florida International- Donte Witner struggled a majority of the season and Cyprien is probably the 3rd best safety in the draft. Jim Harbaugh could work him into a premier safety in the league. Cyprien has speed and many believe he is a "natural" in the backend of a defense.

32. Baltimore Ravens- Kevin Minter- LB: LSU- Minter is known for his physicality as we profiled in our last post. The Ravens need someone to replace Ray Lewis and an aging group of linebackers. Minter foots the bill and can be developed into a premier linebacker in this league.

That concludes my first mock draft of the 2013 NFL Draft. Look for things to change after the Combine and in weeks leading up to the draft. We will have it covered for you and will post our latest mock drafts after they are formulated.

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